The Makers Marks Collaborative, an international team of glass artists, visual designers, composers, and engineers, embarked on a project together from 2015–2016 to use the glassmaking studio as a staging ground for interdisciplinary, collaborative making. The team aimed to capture and preserve the sounds of traditional studio glassmaking, and then to share them outside the workshop domain through digital technologies and glass art objects. The goal was also to fulfill a public engagement grant from the Royal Academy of Engineering to highlight the engineering through the art and the engineers’ vision within the art making. The team recorded and isolated the unique sounds of the glassblowing process and its studio environment, and then used the resulting digital sound collection as the foundation for developing artistic outputs: a virtual instrument library, a glass object-instrument of performance, a series of glass objects translating selected virtual instruments, and a music composition. They questioned the nature and materiality of glass through dialogue between media and conversation among team members, while exploring the practice-based research question: “How can we embed our recorded sounds of the glassmaking process back into the glass itself?” This paper focuses on the collaborative, interdisciplinary making process of the team, the project outputs, and the metaphorical language that was a key process facilitation tool.
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